FRESNO — Four Madera County Sheriff’s deputies are among those to be honored during the American Red Cross Central Valley Real Heroes Event next Friday, for their efforts during the Courtney Fire last summer.
The annual event recognizes local heroes in the Central Valley who are seemingly ordinary people but have touched the lives of community members through their selfless acts of courage.
These heroes may have helped save a life, performed an extraordinary act of compassion, or demonstrated an exceptional spirit of giving.
In addition to honoring these Red Cross Heroes, Congressman Devin Nunes will be presenting the Congressional Badge of Bravery to a law enforcement officer at the evening’s event.
This year’s Red Cross Real Heroes are:
Madera County Sheriff’s Department Deputies Warren Anderson, Eric Grijalva, Chris Williams, and Sergeant Larry Rich, Law Enforcement Heroes – These law enforcement officials were instrumental in alerting the Oakhurst community of the quickly growing Courtney Fire and began evacuating residents immediately, potentially saving lives.
Cole Emerzian and Kyle Stoll, Youth Heroes – These two teenagers rescued a family from their burning home after driving by and noticing it was on fire.
Donna Johnson, Good Samaritan Hero – Now lovingly known as the Porterville “Water Angel,” Johnson began collecting water donations and distributing it to resident affected by the historic drought.
Emilio Valencia, Fire Rescue Hero – Valencia risked his life to enter a burning home to rescue a trapped resident.
Poverello House, Community Partner Hero – Every day the Poverello House provides food, warmth, and compassion to the homeless, hungry, alone and sick who have no one to care for them.
Shaun Vincent, Health Care Hero – This American Ambulance employee saved a man on the side of the road after he had gone into cardiac arrest while driving his car to the store.
John Cook, Richard Helm Jr., and Brian Lango, Military Heroes – These Army veterans came across a car accident and leapt into action to save the lives of the women inside.
Dave Ward and K-9 Callie, Animal Rescue Heroes – Ward and Callie served as an ignitable liquid detection team for eight years and assisted fire investigators throughout Fresno County to put arsonists behind bars.
Charlie Waters, Spirit of the American Red Cross – Waters is an advocate for military veterans in the Central Valley who fought for the 300 bed Veterans Home of California.
Help to honor these every day heroes at the annual event, which features a vintage 1940s theme complete with live big band music, vintage cars, dancing, and a silent auction.
The event is Friday, Mar. 20, at the Corporate Aircraft Hangar, 5007 East Anderson Ave., Fresno, 93727. The last day to purchase tickets is this Sunday, Mar. 15. This is the only fundraising event for the local Red Cross every year.
Tickets can be purchased online: http://www.redcross.org/news/event/ca/fresno/Annual-Real-Hero-Event-2014